The committee could ultimately forward ordinances governing future big-box stores including Walmart, sending a measure to voters in the fall

by: COURTESY OF GRAMOR DEVELOPMENT - Grading work on the proposed shopping complex, which includes a Walmart store, is expected to begin soon.The Sherwood City Council has appointed nine members to a special committee designed to look at possible voter-referred measures involving future retailers in the city. During a council meeting that lasted only several minutes Tuesday night, the council approved a resolution forming a committee consisting of resident representatives Beth Cooke, Naomi Belov, Meerta Meyer, Doug Scott and Dave Robins; and business representatives Lawrence O’Keefe, Nancy Bruton, Rachel Schoening and Alicia Shaw. (See details on committee appointees below.)

The committee will meet for its first meeting Wednesday.

The committee, which was proposed by Councilor Linda Henderson at a June 12 meeting, will determine whether specific ordinances establishing new business regulations should be forwarded to the council -- and ultimately to Sherwood voters -- for approval. The council approved formation of the committee in June after hearing from numerous residents who oppose a planned Walmart store off of Langer Farms Parkway.

Councilor Bill Butterfield cast the lone no vote, saying he didn’t have enough information regarding those who applied and wanted to know what criteria was used to select the committee. Councilor Matt Langer said during a prior work session via telephone that he had concerns about three of the names on the list. The council was unable to reach Langer (who is also the spokesman for the owners of the Walmart property, Langer Family LLC) when it came time for the council to vote on the resolution.

Henderson said those who had input on the 18 submitted applications (three additional applicants weren’t considered because they applied after the deadline) included herself, Mayor Bill Middleton, Councilor Langer and Assistant City Manager Tom Pessemier.

In addition to general questions about interest in the committee, the applications also asked such things as interest or experience in land-use planning and employment law. That list of 18 applicants was pared to nine on Monday. The goal now is to find nights where the committee can meet. Once the committee has determined if specific ordinances should be considered, an explanatory statement and ballot title would be sent to the council for approval, she said.

To be considered for the November ballot, measures (each ordinance would be listed separately on that ballot) must be sent to the Washington County Election Division by Sept. 5.

Since no official pre-application has been submitted for the new Walmart store, which is expected to open in 2014, those new ordinances could apply to plans by the national retailer as well, according to city officials. Meanwhile, permits for grading of the site were issued Monday, according to the city’s website. Click here.

Who’s on the ordinance committee?

Beth Cooke, head of Innovare Strategies NW and a former planning commission member for the city of Lafayette; Naomi Belov, a 4-H leader and an opponent of the Walmart development; Meerta Meyer, a real estate professional; Doug Scott, a software analyst, designer, and architect and Dave Robins, who has worked in banking and financial management for almost 45 years; and business representatives Lawrence O’Keefe, a firefighter with Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue; Nancy Bruton, executive director of the Sherwood Chamber of Commerce; Rachel Schoening, co-owner of Fat Milo’s Family Kitchen in Old Town and Alicia Shaw, facility manager and representative for Chase Bank in Sherwood.

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